W-2s and 1099-MISC reporting Non-Employee Compensation are now due to be filed with the IRS by January 31, 2017. This earlier deadline is aimed to make it easier for the IRS to detect and prevent refund fraud. The earlier due date will allow the IRS to match data filed by employers to those amounts reported on individual returns, thereby spotting errors and providing a method to verify a legitimate return before issuing a refund.
In the past, employers had until the end of March to file W-2s with the IRS if they filed electronically (end of February for paper filed forms). In the case of “extraordinary circumstances or catastrophe,” you may request one 30-day extension to file Form W-2 or Form 1099-MISC by submitting a complete application on Form 8809, Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns, including a detailed explanation of why you need additional time and signed under penalties of perjury.